Photos by David Rubene
The temperature in Minneapolis may be dropping and old Old Man Winter might be raising his ugly head early, but the Whiskey Junction was smoldering HOT on Wednesday night with the Doyle Wolfgang von Frankenstein headlining the evening. Simply known as Doyle, the former guitarist for the Misfit rolled into Minneapolis for his As We Die Tour stop. Openers Motograter and Die Ghost warmed the stage and rallied the audience in preparation for Doyle’s performance.
Die Ghost kicked off the night of music extraordinaire. The Minneapolis-based Horror Punk band took the stage with command and rolled through an excellent. Their musical style and sound are definitely grounded in the eclectic history of punk music’s past but with a refreshing sound all their own. Many of the songs in set took me back a bit to The Damned days. Before I knew it, their set was over. With a couple of album’s out, keep an eye out for this band and catch them live … very impressive!
Motograter hit the stage next. What did I just witness? Out of any opening band I have ever seen this cracks my top five. The first encounter with them was when I tried to use the restroom and the whole Motograter band were in there suiting up in their full horror body paint. At that point I had no idea what to expect.
The band was too big to fit on the small stage, so they placed two members on the ground. One of them was a drummer and a backup vocalist. The drums were made up of what look like barrels with drum heads. However, this did not compare to the bass sound coming from the ‘motograter’. The motograter stood like a pedal steel guitar but had the weight and growl of a hellhound. Motograter had the energy and drive to wake up the weekday crowd. Whether it was just yelling at everyone to wake up, the showmanship of the band, the ‘motograter’, or just the guitarist’s head banging dreads, the band did not fail to deliver. The crowd, by the end of it, was rocking out and had a crazy concert story to pass along.
After a quick stage change and setup, it was time for Doyle to take the stage. With a quick opening of the side stage door, the Vegan Monster of Metal and former Misfits icon was here. It all didn’t seem real. We have all seen pictures and videos of this mythical creature but when Doyle Von Frankenstein is standing right in front of you, there is no other word than terrifying.
The stage was set up with Doyle’s skull symbol on every amp, there was no question who you were seeing. As the empty stage sat in the stage lights and the crowd talk amongst themselves, they was violently interrupted by a guitar lick. At this point every one cheered as Doyle made his way through the crowd to stage. He came out in his classic attire, greased black hair with the spike down his face, the white face paint, the black tight pants and no shirt. Because let’s be honest a man that ripped is scarier without the shirt.
The band took off like a bullet from a gun, fast and precise. They opened their eleven song set with “Abomination”. Doyle did not waste any time before he started his iconic move, beating his guitar while he was playing it. The crowd was instantly drawn in and was captivated with the former Misfits guitarist. However, he wasn’t the only one with all the showmanship. The rest of the band held it together tighter than new strings on a guitar. The vocalist also humored the crowd by starting multiple songs by saying “This is kind of a love song. You can dance if you like.” Then they would proceed into another fast metal song.
The band closed their set with “King of the Undead” After they finished, Doyle walked through the crowd and out the door, like a mythical creature of the night he was gone. Doyle proved at Whiskey Junction that he does not need his past to stay terrifying or to create horror music. The man is a legend and to see him in person (that close) was something special.